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The Fool on the Hill

By Warren Gump (TMF Gump) August 17, 1999

Most investors have enjoyed the stock market over the past three years, as the Standard & Poor's 500 index has surged over 20% each year. While that headline return number is quite important to investors who have their money invested in index funds, it does not necessarily give an accurate indication of what is happening to all of the industries in the market. During this time period, some market segments like technology and telephony have significantly outperformed S&P 500. On the other side of the spectrum, plenty have also underperformed the market.

One area that has been notably weak is food companies, the makers of cereal, cookies, crackers, meats, soups, and chocolate that keep our cupboards and stomachs full. Yup, I'm talking about the General Mills (NYSE: GIS), Keebler Foods (NYSE: KBL), Nabisco Holdings (NYSE: NA), Sara Lee (NYSE: SLE), Campbell Soup (NYSE: CPB), Bestfoods (NYSE: BFO), and Hershey Foods (NYSE: HSY) of the world.

Please go to: and read the entire story. :)

Keep Foolish and prosper,


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Foods stocks are cyclical in nature and you need to be willing to ride the waves. I think that Keebler needs to exploit their cute little elves to entice the little kiddies to buy, but they are the industry leader in their point of sale inventory system. That should be great for margins.
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